A new report by The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) has called on the government to tackle the “vast inequalities” between disabled and non-disabled people in the UK.
Now is the Time, by the CSJ Disability Commission, focuses on five areas of life where the largest barriers facing disabled people exist: employment, education, housing, goods and services, and transport.
The report highlights the “stubbornly high” disability employment gap with only 52% of disabled people in work compared with 81% of non-disabled people. The Commission says the gap will take 40 years to close on the basis of current trends.
Additionally, disabled adults (age 21-64) are 2.5 times more likely than non-disabled adults to have no qualifications, which are a key predictor of employment.
A third of disabled adults experience problems accessing goods and services in society, compared with just 3% of non-disabled adults.
Nearly one in four working age disabled adults report an unmet accessibility need in their own home. According to research by the LSE, this makes them four times more likely to be unemployed than disabled people who do not live in an inaccessible home.
To improve this situation, the Commission has proposed several reforms, including recommending that all young people with an Education Health and Care Plan are offered a fully funded supported internship, and requiring all large employers (with 250+ employees) to report the proportion of their workforce that is disabled.